Can Hand-Free Cellphone Distract The Driver?

Years ago, high school students taking drivers education classes received lots of information about the dangers linked to drinking and driving. Today, while alcohol, drugs and speeding continue to threaten any driver’s safety, distractions belong at the top of a listing of the most serious identified threats. Understand that a listing of such distractions would include use of a hands-free cell phone.

At one time no cellphones had been equipped with a hands-free device. Hence, the law stipulated that driving while on the phone was illegal. That law got amended after the new devices came on the market, making it possible to talk while driving. At this time the changed law remains on the books. Still, the most recent information indicates that it ought to be updated. In addition, the public needs to gain a better understanding of what sorts of actions can be distracting.

The definition of distraction underscores the need for the mentioned update. A distraction is anything that compromises the judgment. In other words, every time that a driver starts talking, the driver’s judgment has been compromised. The person sitting at the wheel while talking has focused on a given activity, other than the road. The drinking of alcohol impairs a driver’s judgment. Other activities keep a driver from having two hands on the steering wheel. Hence, activities such as smoking, texting, use of GPS devices, performing acts of public grooming and eating or drinking are as dangerous as driving while using a traditional cell phone.

The public can appreciate the link between danger and a driver’s willingness to go for long periods without having both hands on the wheel. The public must now build on that appreciation and learn about what is called a cognitive distraction. That is something that affects normal brain activity, and thus diminishes a person’s ability to carry out a given activity.

Whenever a driver’s brain gets focused on a conversation, it becomes affected by a cognitive distraction. Those drivers that become victims of a cognitive distraction exhibit the same symptoms as anyone that suffers inattention blindness. That is the name for the condition that explains a person’s inability, under certain circumstances, to process what the eyes are seeing.

Those facts should be considered by any victim of an automobile accident. In a court of law a defense injury lawyer might argue that the driver “at-fault” was using a hands-free device. That argument can be weakened by a good lawyer. A good personal injury lawyer in Sherwood Park should be able to make use of the latest information on cognitive distractions and in attention blindness.Armed with that most recent information, the same injury lawyer could help win the case. That possibility would be strongest if the case had been filed by an injured victim. Consequently, the lawyers for car accident victims should start winning more cases, once each of them realizes that the person using a hands-free cellphone has become distracted.